Letters to the Editor

Let the kids sing

We are writing to encourage the citizens of Marysville to vote yes on the upcoming Marysville School District School Levy and Building Bond election on the Feb. 9 ballot. This is not a new tax, simply a replacement for the existing one. In fact, a vote yes will actually see your taxes decrease by $48 on a $300,000 home. The current levy pays for things that the state doesn’t pay for. These items include art, music, physical education, sports programs, coaches, nurses, counselors, security officers, librarians and much more.

At Totem Middle School, we are proud to offer a comprehensive music. In the three years since forming, the Totem Music Department has grown to serve 300 students yearly (roughly half the school), with a reputation for excellence in music. Totem offers three grade level choirs, three grade level bands, marimba ensemble, choir club, jazz band club, and drum line. Students in top-quality music programs score 22 percent higher in English and 20 percent higher in math than students in schools without a music program. In Marysville we have found that students who are connected to a teacher or coach through music or a sport are more likely to be successful in their other classes. Our local levy funds are the source of I in 5 dollars spent in the Marysville School District. The Totem Music Program may not be able to continue as a comprehensive program, serving our at risk community without passage of this levy.

During this budget crunch in Olympia, funding for our schools and music/arts education are in doubt. We may not have control over state funding, but we do have a direct say in what happens locally. We urge you to vote “yes” and to mail in your ballot in order to provide the students of Marysville with an excellent education.

Erik Eliason

Peter Joseph

Music Teachers at

Totem Middle School

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